Creating systemic change through public purchasing power

Toronto Circular Economy Procurement Implementation Plan and Framework Creating systemic change through public purchasing power


The need - With annual purchasing contracts amounting to approximately CAD 2 billion in value, the City of Toronto has a significant purchasing power that it can use to strategically drive market innovation. In 2016, the City Council approved the Long Term Waste Management Strategy and formed a Cross-Divisional Circular Economy Working Group to apply circular economy principles to the city’s procurement processes.

The solution - The Circular Economy Procurement Implementation Plan and Framework (the Framework) is the City of Toronto’s tool to leverage the city's purchasing power to drive waste reduction, economic growth, and social prosperity through a circular economy approach.

The outcomes - Since inception, the project has launched the pilot phase and has begun to identify existing circular procurement activities and integrate new requirements within call documents.

How does the initiative support the transition to a circular economy? - The Framework helps the city to drive circular economy innovation and implementation while generating a broad range of societal benefits through its procurement practises.

Explore more about Circular Economy in Cities

This case study belongs to the Ellen MacArthur Foundation’s Circular Economy in Cities suite of online resources, which acts as a reference point for urban policymakers on the circular economy. It draws out opportunities in three key urban systems - buildings, mobility, and products - and looks at how city governments can enable a circular economy transition.

Five modules aim to answer the critical questions on this topic:

  • Vision: What will the implementation of circular economy principles in cities look like?
  • Factsheets: What are the circular economy opportunities in key urban systems and what benefits can a circular economy transition bring?
  • Policy levers: What can urban policymakers do to accelerate this transition?
  • Case studies: What examples are there of urban policymakers already putting this into action?
  • Other networks & resources: What are other organisations doing on the topic of circular economy and cities?

Toronto - case study


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